ADL Study Shows That the Larouche Organization is on the Ropes
Menu JTA Search

ADL Study Shows That the Larouche Organization is on the Ropes

Download PDF for this date

The LaRouche organization, already reeling from federal indictments, also suffered battering defeats in the 1986 primaries, according to an Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith analysis. The ADL said that of 234 candidates in 26 states, only 13 managed to win, of which nine were for uncontested nominations, and none of the 13 is expected to win in November. In making the study public, Nathan Perlmutter, ADL’s national director, attributed the La Rouche candidates’ overall poor performance– more than half received less than one-tenth of the vote — to an informed electorate made aware of the true nature of the LaRouche-sponsored National Democratic Policy Committee (NDPC) in the aftermath of its startling victory in Illinois last spring.

He pointed out that since the two LaRouchites’ surprise victory in the Illinois Democratic primary nominations for Lieutenant Governor and Secretary of State, “the media has given much coverage to the LaRouche cult’s extremist and outlandish views. Its effect has been salutary for the purpose of an informed electorate.”

Perlmutter added, however, that although so many LaRouchite candidates have been rejected, the NDPC managed to register just enough gains “to create the appearance — basically a false one — that LaRouche and his followers are a political force of consequence.”


The ADL analysis noted that since Illinois, the LaRouchites were roundly defeated. They lost 6 gubernatorial candidacies out of 6 primaries entered; 14 out of 14 U.S. Senate primaries entered; 137 out of 144 contests for the U.S. House; 24 out of 27 State Senate primary races; and 32 out of 33 State House primary races.

The ADL analysis, based on reports from its regional offices around the country and prepared by the Fact Finding Department of the agency’s Civil Rights Division, revealed the following:

*NDPC candidates ran in Republican as well as Democratic primaries in 8 states — New Hampshire, Maryland, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Texas, California and Oregon — indicating a trend toward more evenly dividing their forces between the major parties.

*The LaRouche candidates benefited in certain instances from low primary turnout, particularly in areas where the party in whose primary they ran was weak.

*They fared far worse in primary races where they ran against well-known candidates. In Maryland’s Democratic senatorial contest, for example, longtime LaRouche activist Debra Freeman, running against Congressmen Michael Barnes and Barbara Mikulski, received a mere one percent of the vote.

*Although the LaRouche organization has long espoused anti-Semitic views, the candidates generally avoided openly expressing them.


The 7 Congressional nominations won were in uncontested Democratic primaries in Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas (two of the 7 later dropped out). A LaRouchite won an uncontested Democratic primary for the State House of Representatives in Idaho, and in Maryland, a LaRouchite won the Republican primary for the State Senate, also uncontested. Two LaRouche candidates in Michigan won the Democratic nominations for the State Senate in strongly Republican districts.

Perlmutter said that “so long as the LaRouche cult remains active, exposure is its most effective antidote.”

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund